A new “Mileage” book for Joe

A new mileage book for Joe

A new mileage book for Joe

I have had a little bit of time to get into my craft room this week and finish the “Mileage” book for Joe.

Inside, under the front cover, I have created a page with pockets on the front and back.  The pockets are used to store fuel, toll, and permit receipts for the load he is currently on.

Pocket on each side of this page for receipts

Pocket on each side of this page for receipts

Lastly, I bound the book using my WeRMemory Keepers Cinch machine.

Mileage pages in the book

Mileage pages in the book

Our job in Drive-Away requires a lot of paperwork.  We have to keep track of the miles traveled in each state, our fuel costs, any and all tolls or permits, repair expenses, and what the income will be once the job is completed.  All of this record keeping is done in this little book that gets used on a daily basis.

The “Interstate Fuel Tax Authority”, better known as “IFTA” requires each trucking company to keep track of fuel purchases in each state they are permitted to run through.  They levy taxes on the trucking companies from the fuel purchases.  The taxes are then split  up between the states traveled by the company.  It is confusing to explain and I probably made it even harder to understand, so sorry about that.  Each state with Federal and State highways get a cut of the taxes paid for fuel purchases by the entire trucking industry.

I have made a video of the process of putting the book together.  I’m in the editing phases of the blab fest.  More than likely, the video won’t go up to my YouTube channel until I return  home from our next foray out over the highways and byways.

Making journals to fit your personal needs is something that I recommend.  You can’t always purchase a book for  your specific life and the record keeping requirements.  If you don’t have a binding machine you can take your completed project to a copy center, such as Kinko’s – better known as FedEx Office – and they can put the book together for you.  Bound with a spiral spine, or even the ring binding as I have done.

Consider the time and cost involved in creating your personalized journal, plus the costs of having it bound by an outside source.  It may be cost effective to do this if you are only making one or two journals.  If you will be making several and selling them you might consider investing in a binding machine of your own.

Leslie

 

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Personalize a book for a child.

I finally have something to share.  A personalized children’s book for my grandson who will be five this November.

It has taken me most of the month to create this.  Energy levels and mood swings have run amok as I’m recovering from a Sepsis illness.  I won’t bore you with the tawdry details.

A big shout out to Shelly Makowski for checking in on me via text messages during my long absence.  Thank you Shelly.

A DISCLAIMER:  I don’t consider myself to be a prize winning children’s book author.

The concept for this book came about because of a long ago memory.  About 30 plus years ago a publishing company had a Christmas promotion.  Parents could write in and submit the name of each of their children to the publisher.  For a fee, the child’s name would be placed throughout the Christmas story and the personalized book would be mailed to the child just in time for Santa’s visit.

This book is about Simon and the day he climbed a tree.

The book of Simon

The book of Simon

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The papers I have used are all from my stash.  The majority of them are really very old….circa 2005.  Of course, I had to use my Graphic 45 ABC Primer paper from my stash for this book.

Everything has been glued to chipboard.  This is a book, not a mini album, and I felt it would be required of me to securely attach all of the story components.  That way a little boy, or his Mom or Dad, won’t have to worry about things getting lost or put in the wrong spot.  I think it might even be safe to say this book may even survive the toss test.  Maybe even the buried under toys and blankets test.

In the coming week I will be back with more creations.  My business paperwork is nearly done.  Once that is completed I can dedicate more time in my craft room and start making things for my family for Christmas.  With the way this crazy illness saps my strength I figure I will need the extra time.

I hope I have inspired you to create something fun and whimsical.

Leslie

Dealing with “Special Requests”.

Joe has requested another mileage book made for 2014.  He has requested a journal featuring maps of some kind and a pocket inside.

It is good to have family members be the “Guinea Pig” in your journey as a “Paper Artist”.  They get all the wonky creations as you develop your skills toward a professional level.  I haven’t reached that level just yet, but I’m getting closer.  My main problem is my “Perfectionism”.

I purchased a Heidi Swapp “No Limits” paper pad some months back.  I wanted Joe to look through and choose the papers he liked.

Looking at the options

Looking at the options

Explaining the creation process to Joe was a game of communication.   He told me what he wanted and liked, I told him what would work and what would not.  This process took about half an hour because I could not get him to understand the images he wanted on his book cover would have to be glued OVER a base.  He had chosen several map images that are not large enough for a complete cover.  To get him to understand what I was trying to convey I gave him one of the book covers, told  him there needed to be one inch margin all around the cover board.  I let him play with that for a while until he totally understood the concept I was trying to get across.

First choice

First choice

Second choice

Second choice

Once Joe understood the process he decided on some fairly plain paper as the background and chose the images he favored to be placed on the covers.   I also had Joe pick out paper for the inside covers, to hide the edges that wrap around from the front.

Favored choice for front

Favored choice for front

Favored choice for back

Favored choice for back

A second choice for the front

A second choice for the front

When you know what your capabilities are in the construction process, you can guide the person making the “Special Request”.  There are ways of implementing their choices and desires.  Focal images too large for the front, that is dealt with by wrapping the edges around to the inside and covering them with the inside cover paper.

Wrap the image edges

Wrap the image edges

Want to draw attention to a design feature on the base paper?  Use the images to frame the feature.

Include background images

Include background images

I chose to add Washi Tape to the inside cover edges.  The Washi was applied to keep the wrapped images from tearing and/or snagging through wear.

Decorative Washi Tape

Decorative Washi Tape

The back page has a pocket on two sides.  I cut a 12 x 12 sheet of paper to 9 inches wide by 9-7/8 inches long.  Score the paper in half lengthwise at 4-1/2 inches.  Score the bottom edge at 3 inches.  Fold the 3 inch score line up then fold the page in half to create the two pockets.  Joe can put his receipts in the pocket then deal with them at night as he does his paperwork.

 

Pocket page

Pocket page

He only wanted a single focal image on the back of the book.  This was accomplished as on the front.  Wrap the edges around the cover and hide them beneath the inside cover page.

Back cover

Back cover

Upon seeing the completed journal, Joe had to emphasis this item was his.  He said “MINE”.

Joe likes his new journal

Joe likes his new journal

When his children were little, they used to argue and fuss over toys.  One child would proclaim the toy was “MINE”, sending the others into fits of anguish.  Joe solved this “MINE” problem by making the declarative child carry the toy under their arm all day long.  That put a stop to the scream fest of toy ownership.

I reminded Joe of what happens when a person says something is “MINE”.  He obliged.  I think I was mere seconds from getting a tongue stuck out at me.

Humoring me

Humoring me

When dealing with Special Requests by family or others, be confident in your skills as a Paper Artist.  You can create an item to their needs while you focus on manipulating the paper(s) to achieve the desired results.  Keep in mind there are some requests that can not be fulfilled.  Either from the images on the paper or from your skill level.  Family members are the best asset you have in honing your skills.  Take advantage of them and don’t pass up the options of Special Requests from them.  You will both learn something, which is always a good thing.

Go “Show someone how special they are”.

Leslie

 

 

Cinch. Uhm…read the directions :/

Have you been thinking about purchasing a We R Memory Keeper’s Cinch binding system?  Do you already have one and don’t use it?

I bought mine in November, right after I retired from being an over the road truck driver.  I figured if I was going to spend $140 then my butt was going to be home instead of all across the US.

I don’t, as a rule, read the instruction manuals that come with equipment.  Why?  I think there is  more testosterone in me than estrogen :/  Some things I live dangerously and throw caution to the wind.  Besides….I know what I’m doing and there ain’t gonna be anyone tell me different!

That is just before I go SPLAT!

I’m making a type of field journal for my son who is a Mechanical Engineer.  It is for his birthday present.  February is the month of his birth.  I made Joe’s book and didn’t have any problem, so why would I worry now about making my son’s?!

Mainly because it has been more than five minutes since I made Joe’s book.  If you follow this blog you will have been told, on more than one occasion, my memory is not the best.  The expiration time seems to be five minutes AFTER I do something or assimilate any kind of knowledge.

Keep in mind, the following photos are AFTER I botched the first attempt at punching the binding holes.  I cut off the mess and put some of my metal tape along the edge of the front and back cover for this journal I am trying to make.  So….I go and botch up this one also.  HOWEVER, I do have a reason to show you this.

READ THE INSTRUCTIONS!  They are right on the danged machine.  They tried to idiot proof this tool.  Well…..Uhm…..maybe the next time they decide to come out with some special tool they had better come to my house to make sure they have INDEED idiot proofed the device.

Directions in plain view on the  machine

Directions in plain view on the machine

This is the result when the directions are not read and the advice heeded.

Oh, brother!

Oh, brother!

I have a ton of photos of what NOT TO DO.  I think I will spare you that bit of craziness.

Now, listen up here.  Link this post somewhere that you will remember it when you use your brand new Cinch.  Print this post out so you have it handy when the time comes.  Write a note to yourself about this being the place to come when you need instruction for using the Cinch.

Okay, never mind.  I forget where I save blog links in my handy dandy “Favorite” feature in my browser.  I print out useful information and it gets buried and lost in a pile of other papers that I’ve printed off….never to be found again.  Written notes suffer the same fate.  They get buried in other papers.

Are you ready?  Well, if  you are not, too bad because I’m moving right along with or without you.  Now you can feel like one of my kids :/

GET A SCRAP OF PAPER OR CHIPBOARD.  Do that first.  Preferably one that is the size of the piece you will be binding.

Get a scrap to play with

Get a scrap to play with

The contents of my journal are going to be 1/4 inch shorter at the top and bottom than the covers are.  This is an important thing for you to know and consider.  How much of an overhang do you want on your journal?  NONE?  Well then you can leave and go find some other blog to read.  Or go make your bed, do your dishes, or get dressed to go shopping.

The machine is automatically set at a “Zero”.  This is the place you would start with if you DO NOT want an overhang.  This is also the setting you would use for the inside pages of your journal.

Machine set at "Zero"

Machine set at “Zero”

To get the 1/4 inch overhang on the top and bottom of your covers do the following.  Slide the ruler thingy to the left and line up the 1/4 mark.

Move guide to the left 1/4 inch

Move guide to the left 1/4 inch

Place your scrap piece up against the guide stop and push under the machine’s head.

Put scrap against the stop

Put scrap against the stop

Check to make sure your scrap is fully engaged under the head on the right side.

Make sure scrap is fully placed under the head on the right side

Make sure scrap is fully placed under the head on the right side

Lean over to the left and make sure the scrap is fully engaged under the head.

Make sure the left edge is in place

Make sure the left edge is in place

Now pull down on the handle and punch your holes.  When the holes are punched raise the handle to disengage the steel punches.

Lower the handle to punch holes

Lower the handle to punch holes

Next you will have a fight with this guide.  You will need to show it who is boss!  Press on the dang thing until it falls over.  There will be a loud SNAP sound.  You will be absolutely certain you have broken the thing.  The next thing you will be doing is calling me names.  Some quite salty ones at that.

Press hard on the stop to make it fall over

Press hard on the stop to make it fall over

I’m a big girl…I can handle your frustrated utterances.  You will see that all is right with your world.  The guide has, indeed, fallen over.  Just like I told you it would.  Once you show it who is boss.

Guide laid over

Guide laid over

Now pull on the guide and extend the measuring device to its fullest.

Fully extend the guide

Fully extend the guide

Locate the NEXT TO THE LAST hole you just punched in your scrap piece.

Locate the next to the last hole you punched

Locate the next to the last hole you punched

There is a little locking device that is built into the machine.  It is a “Thumb Latch”.  Line the thumb latch up with the next to the last hole you punched.

Thumb notch

Thumb latch

Using your thumb, or finger, press the thing down until it locks into the hole.  Make sure you hear a click.  Oh, and don’t worry about  my fingernail.  It has broken and I have used a home remedy of glue and tissue paper to keep it from tearing further.

 

Press the latch until you hear a click

Press the latch until you hear a click

Before you get all antsy and begin pressing the handle, take a look at where the top edge of the scrap paper is.  I need a 1/4 inch gap at the top of this cover.  Not going to be good if I put a hole there instead.  In your case the punch might end up making a crescent shaped notch in  your piece.  Pull on the peg at the number that is at the place you don’t want punched.

Where will the hole be?

Where will the hole be?

Grab  hold of the little peg and pull it outward.  I will be pulling on PEG #5.

Pull outward on the desired peg

Pull outward on the desired peg

The peg will now stick out further than the rest of its brothers.

Peg will stick out further

Peg will stick out further

When you are ready, pull the handle down.  You will notice that the peg you pulled out will remain near the top.   All of its little brothers will be down near the bottom.

The pulled peg remains at the top

The pulled peg remains at the top

To remove your test scrap lift up on the thumb latch to release your strip.

Lift up on the thumb latch

Lift up on the thumb latch

Check your work to make sure you have the 1/4 inch top and bottom gap and your holes line up with the journal contents.  Do a little bit of a dance and shout if it all worked out well.

Check your work

Check your work

Oh, and DON’T FORGET to push in the peg  you pulled out.  Your happy dance will be over!  Right fast!.

 

Make sure to push the peg back in to place

Make sure to push the peg back in to place

One final note.  On your successful scrap guide, write down all the pertinent information.  Preferably with a Sharpie or black marker.  At the top, write the length of the scrap used.  This will help you later when you want to do this again.  For me, it is a foolproof…notice I didn’t say “Idiot Proof”……way for me to remember what I need to do.

 

Note the length of the scrap

Note the length of the scrap

In the body of the scrap note any guide adjustments made and which pin to pull.

Note guide adjustments and pulled pin

Note guide adjustments and pulled pin

 

Now that you have seen the glorious working of the We R Memory Keeper’s CINCH and are ready to give this a try…..

Go “Show someone how special they are”.

Leslie

The foibles of dis-organization.

The next cupboard I am going to work on is one that very seldom gets opened.  Why?  Because my video making light is attached to the door handle and it blocks the use of both doors.

My video work light

My video work light

Boggles the mind to think that anything creative would ever come out of this space of Chaos.

I forgot to take a “Before” picture of this cupboard.  There still is not much in it but at least it is organized.

Book binding cupboard

Book binding cupboard

On the bottom shelf is my newly acquired We R Memory Makers Cinch.  In the center of the shelf is my Zutter Bind-It-All that I’ve had for a number of years.  Next to the Zutter is a Silent Setter tool made by Provo Craft and purchased long before this century went into the double digits.  Sometime around 2006.  Next to that is a Christmas gift I received from a friend.  A Slice tool set.

On the sort of “middle” shelf are my binding wires for both the Zutter and the Cinch.  I can move the shelf pegs down just a bit in the event I acquire more binding wires.

Now to the top shelf.  I’ll start with the right side of the shelf.  My “sane” purchases.  The purchases I made over the years that have a purpose and are used frequently.

There is the Crimping Tool.  I freely admit that this tool has not been used for quite a number of years.

Crimping Tool

Crimping Tool

Next to the Crimping Tool are my hole punch tools.  My We R Memory Keepers Big Bite and my Cropadile.  I do use these.  In fact, I used the Cropadile when I made the tags for the buckets in my other cabinet.

Cropadile and Big Bite

Cropadile and Big Bite

Now to the insanity.  A big basket of insanity to be exact.  This is Plexiglass.  Not just any Plexiglass either.  These are off cuts from some manufacturing facility somewhere in Kansas.  The Yard Store in Wichita, Kansas had shelves full of these off cuts.  I saw the price of 10 for $1.00 and I went nuts.

Plexiglass off cuts

Plexiglass off cuts

You see….my thinking was – and still is….these pieces would make fantastic mini albums.  The “feet”, which are standing upright now, would help to hold the mini album upright.  I have made one mini album using this Plexiglass and gave the finished item to my youngest daughter about six years ago.  Nothing has happened with these since then.

There is a lot of “real estate” to stamp, even heat emboss, attach photos and tons of embellishments.

Lots of creative space

Lots of creative space

Now that I am home and not on the road being a truck driver I think I will make use of several of these pieces.

For now, I’m pleased that all my book binding supplies and tools are in one place and within easy reach.  Now I need to figure out where I will hang the video making light.

Aye Ca-rumba!  My desire to get this room organized is flagging.  The further I go the worse the mess becomes.  I guess it is just time to…..

Put my big girl panties on

Put my big girl panties on

Stick with me.  The organizational mission is continuing.  Buckle up.  It is proving to be one heck of a bumpy ride :/

Leslie